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On a fateful day in 1964, an ingenious trio invented the Plasma monitor. Initially, the device created by Donald Bitzer, H. Gene Slottow, and Robert Willson could only display monochromatic graphics. Early versions of these monitors were manufactured in one of two flavours: orange and black, or green and black. That’s fine if you’re watching a documentary about where tangerines are grown, as long as it was shot entirely at night and the whole film takes place in an orchard. For everything else, this technology was severely lacking – and would stay that way all the way until 1992. That’s when Fujitsu released the world’s first full colour plasma display, a 21” marvel that impressed audiences worldwide thanks to its groundbreaking picture quality.
Phillips would later release a 42” version of this technology in 1997. This was the first Plasma TV to be made available to consumers in North America, but it carried a staggeringly high price point – costing its initial wave of purchasers almost fifteen thousand dollars. 2008 was the year that Panasonic changed the game. It was at the prestigious Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, that this technological pioneer revealed the world’s largest Plasma display. Standing six feet tall and spanning a length of no less than eleven feet, Panasonic managed to amaze audiences then – and continues that tradition of excellence even today.
Their current offering into the realm of all things Plasma is the 50” Panasonic Viera. Packed with 1080p of pure power, it delivers superior contrast, an impressive response time, and a colour spectrum which leaves its competitors in the dust. Available at the discounted price of $799.99, this SD and USB compatible device represents a tremendous value. Consumers should definitely act before August 30th, when the 50” Viera will revert back to its regular purchase price of $898.99.
If you’re seeking something a little larger, the 60” LG 1080p HDTV is truly a Plasma powered wonder. It offers an astonishingly high dynamic contrast ratio of three-million-to-one. That means punchier, more vibrant colours which are always perfectly configured thanks to LG’s Intelligent Sensor technology. Add to that built-in JPEG, MP2, MP3, and HD DivX support, and you’ll discover that this Plasma display is much more than a TV – it’s a fully capable media centre. On sale until August 16th, this $1099.99 bargain offers stellar performance and an amazingly crisp image.
Some of you may not find yourself with enough room for a larger TV like the ones we’ve covered above. Viewers seeking an entry-level Plasma display should really give the Samsung 43” E450 HDTV a thorough examination. This 720p television features the unique Plasma+1” design – adding almost an inch of extra screen size to your display. USB and HDMI ready, the E450’s real advantage comes from Samsung’s Real Black filter. Enjoy shadows and darker colors which leap off the screen, even when viewed in a low-light environment. Grab yours before August 23rd, and take advantage of Future Shop’s current sales promotion. At $499.99, you’ll save a hundred dollars off of its regular retail price.